Sunday, 7 March 2010

Asakusa and Karaoke

Have two days to catch up on, so expect a looooong post ;)

Friday I had the best lunch ever. Lots of us (I, Chappie, Melanie, Jennifer, Yuki, Martin, Ebu, Julian, German Karolina, Korean Ken, Italian Erika and Laura) went out to eat at a Japanese restaurant just across the street from the school. It was a traditional Japanese restaurant, which meant we had to remove our shoes and sit on our knees on the floor by the table. This turned out to be pretty difficult for the taller guys Martin, Ebu and Julian. Yuki had some troubles too, though not as much as the others :P Those guys are now officially called Trees. xD Left picture (from left to right): Chappie, me, Karolina. Right picture (from left to right): Jennifer, Yuki, Melanie. Friday was also the last school day for Jennifer. She's going back to Hong Kong and then in the end of March she's coming back to Japan to start university in Nagoya :) However she needed to find souvenirs for her family and friends back in Hong Kong so we went to Asakusa. In Asakusa there are a lot of temples and pagods and also two long streets full of small shops, almost like market stands, where they sell basically everything to a much cheaper price than in a real store. One street and a pagod.
I was more fascinated by the temples and the pagods, but I feel like buying a Japanese lucky charm. There are ones for "Safe Driving", maybe something to think about when going home so I can pass that drivers exam the next time :P However, to enter the temples you had to cleanse yourself. Either by washing your hands in the well or breathe the smoke of inscence. Since the well was crowded I chose the inscence and then we entered. It was dark in there so I couldn't really get a good picture, without flash it was bad and with flash it turned even darker :/ However, to compensate I took a picture of the ceiling. Unfortunately I couldn't get a picture of the temple itself either since it was being restored and repaired :/ But according to the others, Asakusa isn't even half as great as Ueno, since the temples in Asakusa are from the 1950's and 1970's. They were just rebuilt back then, but the temples in Ueno go way way back :) The ceiling and the worksite temple.
After the temples and the souvenir market we decided to go to Asakusa Sky Light. It's a huge sky scraper in the middle of Asakusa. The top floor hosts a café in which the walls are all windows so you can see the city from above. We spent hours there just talking and hanging out :) So I was able to get pictures of the city both by daylight and in nighttime :)Later on we went to an Italian restaurant in Shinjuku, it was kind of expensive but I really liked my pasta with seafood :D

Saturday was a school festival so I went to school on that day too. When I got there Yuki was the only one I knew so I hanged out with him. They had put up pictures on collages with long-time students and their host families. I could find Audray, Yuki and Julian on them :) Yuki and I started out going to a play about a Japanese historically important person. I couldn't understand everything, but they used simple Japanese so most of the time I understood what they meant. It was brilliant. Especially in the end when a Swedish person from the audicence (obviously part of the play) went up an started threatening the main character. He was later shot and his last words were "fan vad det ska göra ont hela tiden". Yuki and I almost died with laughter.
Then Ebu had turned up and we went to another classroom, which had been transformed into a sweets shop :P Lots of delicious things. We ran into Chappie too and then it was time for Swedish class. Ebu, Yuki and I, being Swedish, really didn't need it, but we had nothing better to do so we went and sat in the back listening. That was the most fun part of the festival xD It was a Swedish long-time student holding the class and she did it kind of well. Afterwards we went to another classroom, now with Chappie as well, to watch Totoro. Unfortunately it was without subtitles (but since I have seen it so many times with Swedish subtitles, I understood everything :P) but the others couldn't understand much so after a while we went to another classroom where we could try Italian and Taiwanese food. I managed to get both the last teramizu and the last Taiwanese pancake xD Both really delicious :3

By then we were all kind of hungry so we went to a restaurant to have lunch. By then Jennifer and Laura (an Italian girl) and one of Jennifer's Japanese friends had caught up too. During the lunch I talked a lot with Ebu and it was really nice. (His real name is Evgenij and he's Russian but brought up in Sweden). Then some of us went with Jennifer to buy more souvenirs. When she was finished we went to Shinjuku and to the huge department store called Tokyu Hands. At one of the floors we spent a lot of time playing around in the masquerade area xD I was too busy having fun to remember to take any pictures, unfortunately :/ Today I also discovered Haribo. They have Haribo gummibears in Japan! If I ever feel home sick I can buy some sweets from home xD

After Tokyu Hands (by then it was only I, Jennifer, Chappie and Yuki left) we went to karaoke. It was my first time to a Japanese karaoke, and ofc I forgot to take pictures :P But compared to the Swedish karaoke bar I went to... this was so much better. You book a reservation of how many people you are. You then get a room that matches the amount of people. In that room you have a TV with the song lyrics on. You can choose Japanese and Chinese songs in the chooser but you have to ask for the English ones. They are all in a book and it comes with a special machine that tells the TV what English song to play. However in that room there's also disco lights and CGs in the room. You can order drinks and snacks and you reserve the room per hour. We had only one hour and that gave us time to sing 2 or 3 songs each. It was me with a bad singing voice and the other three with really awesome voices :P

After that Jennifer left to meet her roommate who was upset after one of her aqcuaintances had disappeared. Yuki, I and Melanie went to eat at small place. Then Yuki and Melanie wanted to go to a big place with all the sports and games you can imagine, but I couldn't go. By then it was already 10.30pm and I had no idea when my last train went. Now I do :P

Today have been a really relaxed day. I've been going nowhere. Went up around noon and been studying and doing laundry.


  1. No offence Elin but my eyes gets all stripey reading your blog. XD The dark background with the white text is not good for the eyes. XD Anyway, seems awesome. Cool that there are so many international students there. Seems like you eat out allt he time XD

  2. The layouts I like always turn out to have dark backgrounds :/ Can't help it :P
    I do eat out almost all the time :P

  3. The festival seems awsome - unlike the ones we had in Latin. The places and people make everything seem like Elin-wonderland ;) No doubt you're fun, just like you should.

  4. Well, the festival was kind of boring and it was too crowded. But if you compare it to Latin, then it's awesome :P I have fun :) Don't wanna miss out on this or on anything


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